DISCOVERY OF AMERICA With Some Account of Ancient America and the Spanish Conquest
Boston and New York: Houghton, Mifflin and Company, 1892. 2 volumes. First Edition, the scarce First Issue. With two folding maps to Volume I and with two folding maps to Volume II, and with a great profusion of other maps, charts, plates and illustrations throughout the two volumes. 8vo, publisherÕs burgundy cloth, lettered in gilt on the spine. xxxiv, 516; xxiv, 631 [including appendices and extensive index],  ads pp. A fine copy, as pristine and unopened. A rare find in true first edition format in this very pleasing state of preservation.. SCARCE FIRST EDITION AND A PRISTINE UNOPENED COPY. Fiske, a brilliant student who attended Harvard College also graduated from Harvard Law School. ÔFrom 1869 to 1871, he was university lecturer on philosophy at Harvard, in 1870 instructor in history there, and assistant librarian 1872-1879. On resigning the latter position in 1879, he was elected a member of the board of overseers, and at the expiration of the six-years' term was re-elected in 1885. Beginning in 1881, he lectured annually on American history at Washington University... and beginning in 1884 held a professorship of American history at that institution, but continued to make his home in Cambridge, Massachusetts. He lectured on American history at University College London in 1879, and at the Royal Institution of Great Britain in 1880. He gave many hundreds of lectures, chiefly upon American history, in the principal cities of the United States and Great Britain.& The largest part of his life was devoted to the study of history, but at an early age inquiries into the nature of human progress led him to a careful study of the doctrine of evolution, and it was through the popularization of Charles Darwin's work that he first became known to the public. He applied himself to the philosophical interpretation of Darwin's work and produced many books and essays on this subject. His philosophy was influenced by Herbert Spencer's views on evolution. In a letter from Charles Darwin to John Fiske, dated from 1874, the naturalist remarks: "I never in my life read so lucid an expositor (and therefore thinker) as you are."Õ& THE DISCOVERY OF AMERICA is often cited as perhaps the most important of all of FiskeÕs historical writings.
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